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AFTER 1989. The eternal return of Central Europe

Articles

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KeywordsTriple Keywords
Sovereignty--Law and legislation
State sovereignty (International relations)
Sovereignty
Languages
Language and languages
Foreign languages
Revolutions
Insurrections
Revolts
Rebellions
Revolutionary wars
Identity
Identity (Philosophical concept)
Liberal egalitarianism
Liberalism
Becoming (Philosophy)
Ontology
Being
Geography
Political power
Empowerment (Social sciences)
Power (Social sciences)
Science, Political
Government
Politics
Political science
Political theory
Administration
Commonwealth, The
Civil government
Political thought
Mass political behavior
Practical politics
Political behavior
Electoral politics
Politics, Practical

Abstract

was celebrated in 1989 as the return of Central Europe. A liberal revolution restored democratic sovereignty and used the language of human rights, rights and constitutionalism. It was a belated ‘bureaucratic revolution’. This was also seen as a wage for the perseverance of a central European culture that had perpetuated the communist order coming from the east. If the tragedy of Central Europe in the post-war period consisted of being ‘geographically at the centre, culturally in the west and politically in the East’2 as formulated by Milan Kundenra, 1989 meant reconciliation of geography, culture and politics. In parallel to the emergence of liberalism associated with the dissident movements of the 1970s and 1980s, in other words, there was the rediscovery of a Central European Cultural Identity as a ‘narrow West’. The 1989 ‘Rucknach Europa’ coincided with these two parallel and complementary developments: the renewed claim for a Western identity and the conversion to liberalism, the cultural combination with the liberal narrative, the ‘Kundera Moment’ and the ‘Havel Moment’. A quarter of a century later, both developments are called into question...

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